Chelsea have more problems among their squad than goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga, says Arsenal legend Ian Wright. Kepa was dropped by head coach Frank Lampard for the trip to Leicester last month after previously playing every minute of the Premier League season. Willy Caballero came into the side and has since played every league and Champions League match.
Kepa, who remains the world’s most expensive goalkeeper, was recalled for the FA Cup fifth-round tie against Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday.
But ahead of the match, Wright claims the form of the 25-year-old is not the only issue for Lampard.
The Blues have conceded 10 goals in the five games since Caballero came into the side and have won just one of them.
Wright said: “I think that when you do look at Kepa and how Chelsea have still conceded goals when he’s not been there, you have to say as much as he doesn’t make great saves all the time, it’s not just him, there’s more problems.”
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Former Chelsea right-back Glen Johnson claimed the Liverpool tie was a big opportunity for Kepa.
“Yeah [it is a chance for Kepa to prove a point],” Johnson said.
“Rightly so he’s been left out of the starting XI for recent games and Lamps sees this as an opportunity to let him try and fight for that shirt.
“Caballero’s done well when he’s had the chance and obviously now it’s his turn tonight.”
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In his pre-match press conference Lampard says he is not under pressure to pick Kepa ahead of this summer’s European Championships.
“I can only pick the team from a Chelsea view. I haven’t discussed it with him,” Lampard said.
“I keep coming back to the same thing, it’s how well you train — he is training well — and, when you get the opportunity to play, how well you play. That’s all I see.
“I understand all my international players have ambitions but the rules remain the same.
- Chelsea boss Lampard sends message to Kepa over his future
Speaking after announcing his line-up on Tuesday, Lampard told the BBC he had no doubts Kepa would do well against Liverpool.
“I don’t want to make it political, it’s just a choice with the goalkeepers,” he said.
“I’ve said it all season, I have two competitive goalkeepers in terms of Willy and [Kepa].
“It’s an opportunity tonight to play at his best. I always go on training and performance, I’ve got no doubts that he can come in and do a good job because of the keeper that he is.
“So it’s just an opportunity to do well.”
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